From remarks before the House Dec. 8 by Rep. Robert Dornan (R-Calif.):
I was invited . . . to greet General Secretary Gorbachev. I found that I could not do that. I do not criticize anybody who went. I came very close to going myself, but . . . the words of Elie Wiesel to President Reagan last year kept coming back to haunt me. . . . He said, Mr. President, your place is not there, speaking about a graveyard of Nazi SS officers. He said, your place is with the victims.
So I walked across to Lafayette Park and I spoke to the Afghan freedom fighters and their supporters who have been assembled there for three days. I met a little girl whose hair was all burned off. I met a young man whose face was terribly mangled and a young teen-age boy whose arms were gone, all victims of Soviet aggression in Afghanistan.
I do not know how we are going to get across to the general secretary that although many of us support the INF treaty, as I do, we have severe reservations about the validity of a promise made by the head of a government which maintains occupation troops in Afghanistan. When the general secretary told Margaret Thatcher at Brize Norton Royal Air Force Base yesterday that Afghanistan is an "internal problem," then I have doubts about his sincerity. If this Afghan war, which is in its ninth year, is not something that Mr. Gorbachev can withdraw his troops from, then he is not worthy of being called a leader of any country, even a communist country. Those Russian tanks do have reverse gears, and those flying helicopter gunships can be grounded whenever the general secretary says so.